Story Corner: Baby and Lion Dog 

As I’m an avid reader, there was no doubt that the pushy mother side of me would inflict books upon the little lady.

So welcome to my new feature – Story Corner.

And the first book in this series is a fabulous new book called ‘Baby and Lion Dog: The Search for the Missing Nose’.

Missuswolf Story Corner Baby and Lion Dog Book

It’s written by a lady called Elizabeth Forbes, a deputy headteacher, whose dream of writing and publishing a children’s book has come true.

The book is a first in a series aimed at 3-7 year olds.

You can try to sit and read it to your babies, although mine won’t sit through longer stories at the moment (she’s a bit too young – only nine months).

However, I’m starting to build up her collection and I love supporting new writer’s.

Baby and Lion Dog will be added to her bookcase for when she’s a bit older.

Sooo – what’s it abooooot??

Baby and his pet Lion Dog have a special relationship. Each story takes them on a different adventure; searching for clues, helping people and solving mysteries.

What will happen on their special adventure this time?

Baby and Lion Dog attend the local circus whereby they come across a clown who can’t find his red nose (sob!) They must both help him find his red nose in order to save the clown’s performance!

I love the part of the book where they start their hunt for the nose.

The dialogue changes into short, snappy rhyming paragraphs. This picks up the pace of the story and I can imagine when Ella is older that she would love this – it emphasises the little mission that they are on.

Very well written and the illustrations are just superb.

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This book is fab if you’re looking for a last-minute Christmas gift, Christmas Eve Box or stocking filling for your little one.

Grab yours here:

 

Read more about Baby and Lion Dog on their website.

Love Missuswolf xxx

Please note this post contains affiliate links

Missuswolf Typewriter Compliments Disclosure

 

What I’m currently reading – I See You by Clare Mackintosh

I’m currently reading I See You, the second novel by Sunday Times Bestseller Clare Mackintosh.

Clare Mackintosh

You see, I read her first novel I Let You Go (see her interview here) in April last year when I was on a spate of reading psychological thrillers. It was a story so cleverly written that I got to a crucial point (I don’t want to say too much!) which made me fling my book on my lap and gawp open mouthed to myself (no-one else in the room plus hubby doesn’t read -scoff- so he would never get it).

So I’m unbelievably excited to be reading this! Unfortunately I can’t read it as much to my leisure as beforehand (in case you’ve not heard I’ve not long been thrown into motherhood and  yup I seem to use this as an excuse for everything at the mo. Must organise oneself and not harp on about it).I See You

What’s this book aall abooot then?

Check this out:

You do the same thing every day.

You know exactly where you’re going.

You’re not alone.

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classifieds section of a London newspaper, she is determined to find out why it’s there. There’s no explanation; just a grainy image, a website and a phone number. She takes it home to her family, who are convinced it’s just someone who looks like Zoe. But the next day the advert shows a photo of a different woman, and another the day after that.

Is it a mistake? A coincidence? Or is someone keeping track of every move they make . . .

Argh I’m terrified already! I’m a few chapters in and I’m looking forward to snuggling under my duvet on this wet and miserable summer evening to read a few more. I’m freaking myself out at the thought of someone watching every move I make …

I See You has been released today so grab yours here I See You

i see you

Love Missuswolf xxx

Please note this post contains affiliate links

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Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … Kerry Ann Richardson

Monday 25th July 2016

Cuppa and a Catch up pic

Today I’m hosting an author to watch out for – the lovely K A Richardson.

Richardson is a Crime Writer who has just won the July author of the month over at the UK Crime Book Club woohoo! She released her debut novel With Deadly Intent back in April. Her second novel I’ve Been Watching You was released in June. Both novels are climbing their way up the Amazon charts and with the impending release of Time to Play (released 22nd September – pre-order here), you could say it’s been a busy year for Richardson.

She’s achieved all of this working while working in a (very important) full time job too!

KA Richardson Author Pic

I downloaded With Deadly Intent to read while I’m on maternity leave (ever the optimist I With Deadly Intentknow!) Well, optimism does get you somewhere – cue naptimes, bedtimes and throwing-the-baby-at-hubby-after-work times;  all of which provide ample opportunity to grab a couple of pages. But I didn’t want to grab just a couple of pages. I wanted chapter’s – I stayed up late and got up early – I wanted to get to the end of this story to find out exactly what that deadly intention was ;-).

Hi Kerry it’s fab to have you here!

 Congratulations on the success of your first two novels! It’s been an exciting year for you. I’ve just finished reading your debut novel – what was the inspiration behind With Deadly Intent?

With Deadly Intent started as the 15000 words I needed for my dissertation for my MA Creative Writing. I was a CSI (crime scene investigator) at the time of completing my MA and instinctively knew that writing crime was something that appealed – I decided to draw on my CSI experience and use the processes in the novel to make it a little less police procedural and a little more something that readers might enjoy. The characters just came alive and I carried on writing after I’d finished (and passed) my MA. Love that you’re enjoying it Gemma!

I've Been Watching YouHow would you compare writing With Deadly Intent to anything you’ve previously written?

I’ve always written – whether that be little handwritten books stapled at the sides for the teachers in primary school, or poems written to help deal with emotion through school and into adulthood – crime writing differs from that as it feels almost real to me – I create these characters who become my best friends for some time – though I’d never do to my friends what I put these poor characters through. My previous work was more focussed around emotion I’d say, where the crime novels are based around things that hopefully, are believable, scary, and give people a little insight into my characters and their lives.  

How do you organise your writing time around working a full time job?

With great difficulty at times! Sometimes it’s not so bad – I write a lot when I’m on annual

Time To Play

Available 22nd September 2016

leave so family holidays are always good writing times. I also try to structure my time when I’m on rest days – this tends to work and my friends and family are very understanding if I say I can’t go somewhere as need to finish a scene or a chapter. I also have an autoimmune disease so it can be a bit of a battle at times but I get there in the end.  

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

It’s a little clichéd but writing is something I’ve always done, either as a coping mechanism or to express myself.

Generally my earlier writing was just for me and would never see the light of day. I see a lot of things as inspiration – books especially. Enid Blyton is definitely one of my earliest inspirations – the books I mentioned making for the teachers were handwritten, stapled at the sides and usually full of cat characters (the teacher loved cats). There was always a little mystery though – I loved the famous five and secret seven. As I got older, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men was introduced – this resonated with me – I had intense emotional feelings when I read this – and reread it I don’t know how many times. I remember sitting at school and watching the movie in English with tears streaming down my face – yes I was laughed at, but the point is it made me feel. Later I fell in love with the Sherlock Holmes series by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle – I loved how he made someone like Sherlock, who is a sociopath, always in control, and quite dislikeable really, to life and made him into someone likeable who solved crimes with Watson. I think all of those impacted in some way on what I eventually would come to write.

famous-five-01-1991Ah we have very similar interests – I loved reading a good mystery adventure story like Enid Blyton’s Famous Five and Secret Seven too.  

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and are able to let your creative juices flow?

I have two places really – my office which is upstairs and in a state of messy chaos – I can lock myself away and bury myself in the book. It has my lovely book shelves in it, all my old writings, and I work at my grandad’s old desk.   

The other place I enjoy writing is, a little stereotypically, coffee shops. Primarily starbucks but I’ll happily write in any as long as the chairs are comfy and I have a plug for my laptop – I love the smell of coffee, and I love the background noise. It’s amazing what snippets of conversation you pick up when sitting there that could potentially form something for your novel!

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know.KA Richardson

Oooo tough question.

I’m a really positive person – I believe in the power of positivity and love inspirational quotes, living a positive life etc. But I also suffer depression, I have done for years, and am on antidepressants. I don’t mind raising awareness of depression and will mention this at random times but most people don’t realise I suffer with this as generally I come across as a really upbeat and positive person. I’m good at projecting that mask we all wear and I find people look at me incredulously when I say I have this disease. I deal with it by accepting that some days are just worse than others and living each day as if it’s a new one. I focus on the good things I have in my life as a rule and look both forwards and upwards which helps me cope.

You’re such an open, honest and positive person – thanks for sharing with us about your depression, I can imagine that’s not easy to deal with.

Thanks for your time Kerry and I wish you all the best with your books.

~

Grab your copy of With Deadly Intent here

With Deadly Intent

http://www.kerryannrichardson.com/

Find K A Richardson on Facebook

@kerryann77

Amazon Author Profile

Love Missuswolf xxx

Cuppa and a Catch-Up – An Author Interview with … none other than the super fab ‘The Unmumsy Mum’ – Sarah Turner (eeek!)

Sunday 10th July 2016

Cuppa and a Catch up pic

Please note – this post contains affiliate links

I am unbelievably excited that I have the one and only Unmumsy Mum featuring on my blog today! Argh! Sarah Turner is the author of Sunday Times No. 1 Bestseller The Unmumsy Mum, derived from her award winning blog ‘The Unmumsy Mum’.



 

 

Sarah Turner pic 2 Hi Sarah (or Unmumsy Mum – can I call you that? What do you prefer?! Sorry just super excited to have you here!)

Haha! Lady Unmumsy of Mums please. Just kidding, Sarah’s fine.

You describe your blog as a collection of honest outpourings about life as a mum. I was a mum-to-be when I started reading your blog and it was so refreshing to read something that wasn’t sugar coated and well, just real life. What made you decide to voice your motherhood experience on a blog?

Thank you! The slightly airbrushed accounts of parenthood had left me feeling a bit rubbish, like perhaps I wasn’t up to the job, so the blog was really my way of documenting that feeling and hoping (with everything crossed) that others were feeling the same. It turned out they were – in their thousands! – and aside from follower numbers and blog hits and the all the other madness that came with it, the on-going feeling of reassurance that I’m not alone has been the single best consequence of pressing submit on that very first post!

Sarah Turner picHow did you juggle motherhood and writing your book? For all the mothers who write or want to write out there, please let us in on your secret …

I wish I could tell you that there is a magic formula but the truth is ‘juggle’ is exactly the right word. I didn’t always juggle successfully either, some months I felt like I was letting the boys down by not giving them my full attention and other months I felt like I was letting my publishing team down by missing deadlines. The whole process involved a lot of late nights, copious amounts of prosecco and a few tears. It was hard work. That said, it was definitely the most fun I have ever had while working hard.

When you have time (!) to read (or should I re-phrase this to what did you read in your pre-unmumsy days?) Who are your favourite authors?  

I do try to read but it has definitely fallen by the wayside since I started writing my own! The last book I read was The Girl on the Train and before that I was sent a proof copy (author perks!) of A Boy Made of Blocks by Keith Stuart which explores the relationship of a dad and his autistic son. It was brilliant, actually. One to watch. 

Unmumsy

Me making Mat Leave look glam – faking the ‘supermum’ (washing on the line and reading in the garden, everything’s under control blah blah) that Lady Unmumsy talks about in her book. If this pic had audio there’d be a wailing baby and I’d be swearing under my breath.

How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on? 

Not a moment as such but it was probably just my dad, who is a (now retired) English teacher. I always loved writing stories when I was little and my dad’s encouragement played a massive part in that. I kept diaries for years, so writing has always been part of my life. I think blogging is an extension of that.

Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world (if you can with small people around!) and are able to let your creative juices flow? 

Interestingly (or annoyingly, whichever way you look at it!) I don’t actually have a desk. With no spare room/office and the boys’ rooms full to bursting I just haven’t ever claimed a workspace as my own. However, I did write quite a lot of my first book at Exeter library and I feel relaxed there. Otherwise, I write on my lap in front of the telly. Not very glamorous I’m afraid!

And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know

Oh god, I’m useless at these. I never know what sort of fact I’m supposed to provide. That I have a phobia of sharks? That I have terrible eyesight? Actually, a more interesting fact that not many people know is that I was a helpline volunteer for a rape and sexual violence charity for two years. It’s not something that comes up in day-to-day conversation but if I ever get the chance to shout about it I do, because the work undertaken by such charities (alongside the inspiring stories of the survivors themselves) is pretty incredible.           

Thank you for being here today Sarah and best of luck with the book.

Pleasure. Thanks for having me.

If you’re one of the few that haven’t read Sarah’s blog or book, check them out here …

Theunmumsymum.BlogSpot.co.uk

Love Missuswolf xxx

Little Gems – What Ella is reading …

So this happened in March  – I got myself my own Little Wolf.

Ella and me fun

I fear I’ve become one of those pushy mams (mums) where I’m forcing my interests on her at three (nearly four – good god where does time go?) months old.

In my defence, I received a lovely little pack from the health visitor that included these two books; Baby Talk by Stella Blackstone and Clip Clop by Nicole Smee. She encouraged me to read to Ella and the geek in me needed no persuading.

Baby Reading

So Ella sweetie, I’m really sorry but you’re in for a very loooong ride of Mammy’s ridiculous crack at reading stories to you.

Reading to Ella

I fear she may be the more sensible one

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Bookworming my way back into blogging

 

THURSDAY 09th JUNE 2016

Wow – it’s over a year since my last blog post and things have changed dramatically!

My focus has slowly wondered away from the writing and blogging world over the last couple of years. This was due to a fantastic opportunity at work – I was involved in a high level project that sucked all of my time and energy. It barely left any time for reading let alone looking after this baby.

Speaking of babies, I then had one of my own. Little Miss Ella joined us in March 2016 – yep, I’ve joined the mummy (or ‘mammy’ as we say here in Geordieland) gang.

So I thought it was only apt that my first book to get me back into reading should of course be The Unmumsy Mum by Sarah Turner. I started following her blog (hilarious – check it out here) when I was in the early stages of my pregnancy – reading it on my phone while sitting on the bike machine at the gym (I was full of good intentions early on – that soon changed  when the Easter Eggs hit the shops! Cadbury’s chocolate was my ultimate guilty pleasure towards the end). My lovely friend Rachel bought me the book as a mammy gift before I had Ella and I started reading it in the hospital the day after she was born (hubby had managed to escape home for a bit, Ella was napping and there was only so much Jeremy Kyle I could watch on the TV!)

Unmumsy

This makes Mat Leave look deceivingly glamorous – it’s not. I was lucky to read a couple of pages on this day as someone wanted attention.

 

Obviously I can’t spend maternity leave reading all day (not for the want of trying, there’s just a small human that keeps interrupting). But I’m going to give it a damn good try. I’m hoping to build up to writing again – this blog post being a starter for ten. I write this (quickly) after a successful full nights sleep (hurrah) while sitting on my bed as Little Miss E naps on her Poddle Pod. It’s 9am and we’re both fed, washed and dressed ready for the day. High five me.  Oh wait – she’s stirring – I’ve shoved My Little Pony on the TV to buy me a few more minutes.

I’ve lost my confidence in my writing and I’m in danger of loosing any brain cells I had left as I’m not working. I’m one of those saddos who loves to work. I’m loving spending time with my munchkin don’t get me wrong, but like most mams (mums) out there we all like to do something for ourselves. My biggest fear was loosing myself and I’m hoping that if I can get back into Missuswolf’s StoryLand, it will give me a sense of something that’s mine and I’m doing for myself.

After twelve weeks of trying in vain to establish a sleep routine, joining various baby groups and hanging around with my friends with babies I’ve managed to establish a comfortable (yet unpredictable!) pattern. Fingers crossed I can keep this up and hopefully fit in what I’ve loved doing since I was a child – reading and writing.

I’m off now to pound the pavements of Blyth with my sister and her kids (this Easter Egg weight won’t shift itself).

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

 

 

 

What I’ve Been Reading – February 2015

SUNDAY 1st MARCH 2015

Happy Sunday folks! We’ve just returned from a weekend away in beautiful Ambleside in the Lake District. The excuse was to celebrate my (belated) birthday as the hubby was away for my actual birthday.

Five mile walk at Elterwater certainly blew away a few cobwebs

Five mile walk at Elterwater certainly blew away a few cobwebs

However, the timing couldn’t have been more perfect for us both. After a particularly stressful week at work – hubby on call and I dealing with one of many urgent projects – getting away from it all was the breath of fresh air we needed.

And it doesn’t get much fresher than at the Lakes.

Boat trip from Ambleside to Bowness

Boat trip from Ambleside to Bowness

Recharging our batteries with the obvious indulgence in food and drink, we justified it all with a five-mile walk around Elterwater. We played our role as tourists by participating in the red cruise from Ambleside to Bowness and tapped into a more sophisticated side of us both – listening to live music at the Jazz café Zeffirellis.

I managed to squeeze some reading in yesterday morning at the lovely B&B we were staying in – Lacet House – when hubby had to make an emergency trip to Asda (something to do with forgetting a suitcase. Now that’s a different story). And since this blog is about stories, I won’t waffle on about our trip

I’ll cut to the juicy bits.

Here’s what I read in February:

Paula Daly – Keep Your Friends Close

Renee Knight – Disclaimer

James Patterson – Mary Mary

But first – let’s see where January ended …

Lee Child One ShotI ended January’s reading list half way through Lee Child’s One Shot. I finished this book early into February and I can confirm that I was pleasantly surprised. It all comes together in the last 100 pages where the pace really picks up and my heart was in my mouth, I couldn’t put it down. The slow start was worth persevering with as the action toward the end of the novel more than makes up for it. A clever concept.

 

Paula Daly – Keep Your Friends Close

SynopsisKeep Your friends close

Your best friend isn’t who you think she is.

You’ve been friends since university, when you became the people you are today.

You don’t see each other enough but when you do it’s as if you’ve never been apart.

She’s one of the family. You would trust her with your life, your children, your husband.

And when your daughter is rushed to hospital, you’re grateful that she’s stepping in at home, looking after things.

But your best friend isn’t who you think she is. You’re about to find out just how wrong you were.

Thoughts:

A Psychological thriller that’s wickedly clever. You can’t help but fall in love with Natty’s control freak nature as she’s like many of us – striving for perfection, to have it all; the husband, the children, the business. But when her daughter takes ill and she rushes to France to be by her side, we see Eve, her friend from college, prey on her weakness – her absence from her already neglected husband.

We’re so wrapped up in Natty making sure that her daughter’s alright that when we get to Eve and Sean’s antics, we’re devastated. Daly builds up the tension from start to finish, with the sexual tension between Eve and Sean, to the volatile feeling Natty has towards them and the effect this has on her daughters. We follow this tension to an intense finale.

There are underlying stories from other characters such as Natty’s father. We also see the return of Detective Constable Joanne Aspinall, who appeared in Just What Kind Of Mother Are You?

Daly has again written a page-turner and Eve is a character that you love to hate. The character’s are realistic and the emotions that they experience, particular Natty, you feel with them.  Daly builds up the frustration and anger wonderfully and there’s a scene where she has no means to pay for petrol. It’s a small, but significant scene. A point where we could all relate to the circumstance in one way or another and in this story, it’s like the straw that broke the camels back. Something minor in the grand scheme of things but tips you over the edge.

We’ve all been there in some way shape or form.

I was lucky enough to host Paula Daly last month on my Cuppa and a Catch Up feature. You can read the full interview here.

Renee Knight – Disclaimer

Disclaimer Synopsis

When an intriguing novel appears on Catherine’s bedside table, she curls up in bed and begins to read.

But as she turns the pages she is sickened to realize the story will reveal her darkest secret.

A secret she thought no one else knew…

Thoughts:

This is a debut thriller from Renee Knight and she’s joined Paula Daly in my shout-through-the-rooftops love for books that I can’t recommend enough.

The snappy synopsis is short but once those three lines were cast, they hooked themselves into my mind from the moment I read them.

What an interesting concept – a story within a story. I was intrigued as to where this novel would take me.

Catherine Ravenscroft has the perfect life; a successful career, a doting husband and a grown-up son who is finding his independence in the world. After moving house, things are just about settling down and, like many of us, she picks up a book for a bit of escapism.

However, the book (The Perfect Stranger) does not provide the kind of escapism Catherine is after.disclaimer 3

The structure of Disclaimer works wonderfully; the chapter’s flit between the present and the past, following both Catherine and the author of the book she’s reading. Disclaimer is written in such a way that you become attached to both character’s at different stages throughout the story, the words leading you into changing your loyalties. I found my perspective of Catherine changing and I was horrified to find myself feeling like that. It made me want to read on – to challenge why the author of the book she was reading had written it. And if it indeed was true.

And this is where Renee Knight has you gripped.

Disclaimer has an undercurrent of suspense throughout the novel leading to a very tense finale. My heart raced as  I stayed in bed for an emotional two hours on a Saturday morning, the household chores and plans for the morning completely cast aside as I simply had to read on, to find out if the ending of Disclaimer married up with the ending of The Perfect Stranger.

That’s an outcome which you will just have to establish yourself.

I don’t think you’ll be disappointed, I certainly wasn’t.

I received an Advanced Reader Copy of this book from Transworld Publishers. Disclaimer is released on the 9th April 2015

James Patterson – Mary, Mary

Mary MarySynopsis

This is the eleventh book in the Alex Cross series

Somebody is intent on murdering Hollywood’s A-list. A well-known actress has been shot outside her Beverly Hills home. Shortly afterwards, the Los Angeles Times receives an email describing the murder in vivid detail. It is signed Mary Smith. More killings and emails follow – the victims are all major Hollywood players. Is it the work of an obsessed fan or a spurned actor, or is it part of something far more terrifying? As the case grows to blockbuster proportions, Washington, DC, FBI agent Alex Cross and the LAPD scramble to find a pattern before Mary can send another chilling update. Filled with the ruthless and shocking twists that make his fans hunger for more, MARY, MARY is James Patterson’s most sophisticated thriller yet.

 

 

Thoughts:

My love affair of James Patterson’s novels continues in the form of Mary, Mary.Mary Mary 2

Written in his usual short chapter structure, with the last sentence always begging you to turn to the next chapter, Mr Patterson tells us the story of a murderer going by the name of Mary Smith.

Mary Smith is an arrogant killer that leaves no trace, creating their own story by murdering Hollywood A-lister’s and taunting the FBI and LAPD by sharing the details with the press.

Mary, Mary is a typical James Patterson page turner and has all the right ingredients for a crime thriller, right through to a decent and satisfying ending. I did enjoy this book and it had me hooked, but the concept of the storyline wasn’t up there with some of the books that I’ve read recently.

 

Spring has sprung and I can’t wait to see what books March has to bring …

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

 

 

 

What I’ve Been Reading – January 2015

FRIDAY 30th JANUARY 2015

Happy Friday folks!

I’ve managed to take a break from the day job today (I’ve had to wait in for someone from Sky) so it’s meant that I’ve spent all day reading and writing – yey!

This month, I’ve tried to read a bit more than just a couple of chapter’s a night. So instead of watching the TV, I’ve had my head in a book.

January’s reading list has consisted of the following books:

Stephen Booth – Dying To Sin

Paula Daly – Just What Kind Of Mother Are You?

Lee Child – One Shot

Stephen Booth – Dying to SinDying to Sin

Synopsis

For decades, Pity Wood Farm has been a source of employment for poor workers passing through Rakedale, migrants with lives as abject as the labour they sought. But now it seems a worse fate may have befallen some of those who came upon this isolated community.

Routine building work at the farm has unearthed a grisly discovery: a human hand preserved in clay. When police dig up the farmyard, they find not one, but two bodies – and several years between their burials.

With pressure from a new superintendent and scant forensic evidence to aid them, DS Fry and DC Cooper have only the memories of local people to piece together the tragic history of the farm. 

In a case as cold as the ground, Cooper finds himself drawn to a desperate theory: that somewhere, there lies a third body which holds the key to these dreadful crimes.

Thoughts:

I’ve read a Stephen Booth book before – back in October 2011 –  Scared To Live (read blog post here). I’m a scatty reader when it comes to his and James Patterson books. I never seem to read them in the right order in the series. But that’s the beauty of writers like these – they write in such a way that you can just pick up – say book eight – and off you go. No real need to have read the previous book in the series. You get the gist.

For me, Dying To Sin is not one of the fastest paced novels I’ve read – but it’s not the slowest. I know that’s a vague description but that’s how I felt about it – vague. I like Stephen Booth’s style of writing – I really did feel like I was out in the Peak District, shivering with Fry and Cooper as they try to piece together what’s happened. I was a bit slower reading this – I spent most of January with Dying To Sin. It had a slow start and I felt the story went on quite a bit, as if I was waiting for something to happen. But I persevered as I’ve experienced this before with James Patterson’s Beach Road. I didn’t connect with that book to start with and I had similar feelings with Dying To Sin. However, I learnt to always give books the benefit of the doubt – and the last 100 pages of Dying To Sin did pick up pace and did leave me satisfied. But it’s not one of my favourites.

Paula Daly – Just What Kind Of A Mother Are YouPaula Daly Just What

Synopsis

Your friend’s child is missing. It’s your fault.

No family is perfect.

A husband, three children and a full-time job, so many plates to keep spinning.

No wonder you forgot you were supposed to be looking after your friend’s daughter.

But no one has seen her since yesterday.

And she’s not the first to go missing from your small town.

So who’s hiding something?

Thoughts:

I LOVED this book! Unfortunately you will have to wait until next month to hear more about it as Paula Daly has kindly agreed to take part in ‘Cuppa and a Catch-Up’ (thanks Paula!) But all I can say is that this book is on par with when I read The Hunger Games. A real page-turner – I didn’t want to put this one down and it really was a case of ‘just one more chapter’. I started it Saturday and finished it Monday. It’s gripping and it gets inside your head as you think ‘oh god, it could potentially happen.’ I’m not a mother so I can only begin to imagine what it would feel like. But the author brought that all to life for me. I laughed and I cried at this book. I’ve got her next one lined up Keep Your Friends Close (thanks Tammy Exton – check out her blog here).

Lee Child One ShotLee Child – One Shot

Synopsis

Six shots. Five dead.

A heartland city thrown into terror. But within hours the cops have it solved. A slam-dunk case. Apart from one thing. The accused gunman refuses to talk except for a single phrase:

Get Jack Reacher for me.

Reacher lives off the grid. He’s not looking for trouble. But sometimes trouble looks for him. What could connect the ex-military cop to this psychopathic killer?

 

Thoughts:

I’m 198 pages into this book at the moment. I loved the last Lee Child book that I read (Worth Dying For) so when I inherited this book from the Harvey’s, it was a must. Although it’s not as good as Worth Dying For which I couldn’t put down. One Shot I’m not so fussed about. It does have me hooked as to how the story is going to pan out. Lee Child’s style of writing is fast-paced and very visual. A lot happens at the start of the book and he brings this to life very well. Of course, all is not as it seems and Jack Reacher gets called in. That’s when the real mystery starts to unravel. Again I’ll persevere with this one as I may be pleasantly surprised. I think it’s had a hard act to follow when I’ve fallen so deeply in love with Paula Daly’s novel.

On that note, I’ll go and read a couple more pages …

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Cuppa and a Catchup – An Author Interview With…Emerald Barnes

SUNDAY 10th FEBRUARY 2013

Big Mug

I would like to wish a warm welcome to the lovely Emerald Barnes, whose recently released her Amazon Bestseller Romantic Thriller ‘Read Me Dead.’

~AUTHOR BIO~

Emerald Barnes graduated with a B.A. in English with an emphasis on Creative Writing at Mississippi University for Women. She resides in aAuthor Pic small town in Mississippi and has the accent to prove it.

She’s the author of two books, mainly writes suspense/thrillers in the YA genre, but she dabbles in other genres and her books are enjoyed by all ages!

She’s constantly working on new novels and has more ideas than she knows what to do with. She blogs at emeraldbarnes.blogspot.com and ebarnes23.wordpress.com which takes up more of her time than she anticipates but loves it so very much! She’s also a volunteer at the World Literary Cafe which is so amazing!

She’s an auntie to two beautiful nieces and two handsome nephews who take up the other half of her time, but she couldn’t imagine spending her time in any other way!

She’s a Whovian, a little bit of a nerd, a reader, a writer, and a family-oriented person. God is number one in her life, and she thanks Him continuously for His love and favor.

~SYNOPSIS~

Read Me Dead:

Read Me Dead CoverAlexia Wheaton’s problems go far beyond picking a dress and a date for the homecoming dance.

For seven years, Alex has lived with a painful memory – the memory of her parents’ horrific murder. As the sole witness, she has kept quiet about the identity of the murderer to protect herself and her family and friends, but when a journalist over hears her secret and writes about it in the local newspaper, Alex is plagued with fear that her parents’ murderer will soon find her – and silence her forever.

Alex is catapulted into a race against time to save her own life and bring her parents’ murderer to justice. She will face many secrets, lies, and betrayals before the truth about their murder is revealed.

Get that cuppa, find a nice cosy spot as we settle down and catch up with the fab Emerald Barnes, Author to Piercing Through the Darkness and her new release Read Me Dead.

Hi Emerald and welcome! It’s great to have you here.

Thanks for hosting me, Gemma!  It’s a pleasure to visit your blog! 

Where did the inspiration behind ‘Read Me Dead’ come from?

The inspiration for Read Me Dead came to me in a dream.  I know it may sound strange, but I had this dream of a girl, running from a murderer at a high school football (American) game.  I incorporated that scene into a novel I had been working on about a young girl who had seen her parents murdered.  From there, Read Me Dead was born.

 How would you compare writing this book with writing your other book, Piercing Through The Darkness?Piercing Through The Darkness

It was definitely different.  For starters, it was a full-length novel, and I was entirely sure I could manage the word count on a full length novel!  But, aside from that, Read Me Dead was a little darker.  Not that Piercing is a light read, but I was in the head of my main character who is suffering from the beginning of this one.  Kandi in Piercing didn’t know she had a reason to suffer until later. The two young women were significantly different.

 How did you start writing? Was there a particular book or moment in your life that spurned you on?

I think that I’ve always wanted to write.  I’ve loved reading since a young age, and I always carried around a notebook and pencil with me.  What did I write?  I honestly don’t remember, but I remember having that on me at all times.  It wasn’t until high school that I really became interesting in writing.

I started writing a novel, that will NEVER see the light of day, but that is exactly what spurred my writing attraction.  I began writing more and more and fell in love with it.  Now, I can’t imagine doing ANYTHING other than writing.

But, there was this time in high school, in my tenth grade English class that I can remember clearly.  My teacher made us write in a journal, mostly my journal entries included a crush on a senior and talking about high school nonsense; however, I loved the feel of writing.  Not to mention, my teacher, she loved the written word!  Her enthusiasm spread to me, and I honestly believe that is why I love writing and reading so much.

I too had an English Teacher whose enthusiasm spread to me too! It really does encourage you to believe in yourself. You are Author to two blogs, a volunteer for the World Literary Café – how do you organise your writing time?

To be honest, that’s still something I’m working on.  I don’t have very good organizational skills, and I’m a super procrastinator.  (I think that’s my superhero name.)

I just wake up and start working.  But, I do take the time to do what I need to around the house, spend time with my nieces and nephews, and find time to go out on the weekends with my best friend.  I’m not sure how I do it; I just do.  I think it starts with making mental notes in my head about what I HAVE to do.  I get those done and see where I can go from there.  I’ve learned that not everything has to be done on a strict schedule.

 Where is your best ‘writing space’; the place where you feel comfortably locked away from the world and able to let your creative juices flow?

I don’t have a special place.  In fact, I sit in my recliner surrounded by my wild and crazy family with the TV going nonstop.  I feel weird when I’m alone and by myself.  I actually work better surrounded by my nieces and nephews and their yells for Auntie Em’s attention.

 And finally, tell us an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know.

Well, I’ve been told that I have a nice singing voice.  Personally, I’m not sure about that, because I hate the sound of my own voice.  But there it is! 🙂

Thank you for being here today Emerald.

 Thanks again for hosting me, Gemma! 

Connect with Emerald Online:

Read Me Dead

https://ganxy.com/i/73581

Piercing Through the Darkness

https://ganxy.com/i/73578

Website

Blog

Inspiration Blog

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Google +

Amazon Author Page

Piercing Through the Darkness Trailer

Read Me Dead Trailer

Read Me Dead Cover

Love Missuswolf xxx

Fifty Shades Trilogy – E L James

TUESDAY 17th JULY 2012

 

Yes, I too succumbed to the hype and joined the Fifty Shades Bandwagon; partly after a couple of friends were banging (excuse the pun) on about it on our girly trip to Ibiza and partly out of a need to satisfy my curiosity from a writer’s point of view – what has driven so many women wild about this book, causing a mass media frenzy and a sell out in supermarkets?

As an aspiring Indie Author, I like to know what makes readers tick; where the market is and if anything I write remotely slots into that area. After all, I love writing and there’s no greater pleasure than others enjoying your work.

Exactly three weeks since that trip to Ibiza, I finished reading the third book, Fifty Shades Freed, early this morning.

I have mixed thoughts on the books.

Credit has to be given for the storyline – it did have me intrigued and the author very cleverly leaves it on a cliffhanger at the end of Book Two, Fifty Shades Darker, which, with my insatiable inquisitive appetite, had me parting with a couple more English pounds to download the third.

However, I did find the dialogue very repetitive, to a point of annoyance where I was wishing the author had used a thesaurus more on these words; impassive and unreadable. Also, the phrases ‘lips parted to take a breath’ ‘turned on their heels’ (which I think appeared three times in one chapter in book three) were over used and I found myself getting irritated when I read them.

Saying that, I did enjoy the way the author created a comparison between Anastasia’s inner goddess and subconscious throughout the book, I thought that was a clever little insight into Anastasia’s personality and represented the constant battle of emotions she experienced.

The Author builds up the sexual tension in the first book, Fifty Shades of Grey, to an explosive Chapter Eight, which i think was really well done, keeping the reader in almost as much suspense as Anastasia.

Plus, I really enjoyed the snippet at the end of Book Three from Christian’s point of view when he first met Anastasia, reliving the experience through his eyes. This was a wonderful idea by the Author, particularly as it opens the gate of opportunity to release a book written entirely from Christian Grey’s point of view. This I would find interesting as he is such an angry, arrogant character it would be fabulous to see how his mind works.

I think back to when I tried to read the Twilight books, I had varied feelings about them (which I am still only halfway through reading) Again, this was to establish what all the fuss was about and I do think that those books could have been written a little bit better.

I compare them in a way to The Hunger Games, having read the first book in just over a day – something I had never done before. That addiction to the story and the writing lurks in my mind. Another fabulous writer is Rosamund Lupton, with her poetic dialogue making her books a beautiful read.

I think that the Fifty Shades trilogy, although it is not badly written, also proves that if you have the right target audience, you can be hugely successful, and that the best publicity is the oldest form; word of mouth.

Talking about it at work, in the hairdressers, nodding knowingly at the lady on the Metro who is reading the same book as you as another passenger looks on intrigued, harping on at your friends whilst on holiday with them, pouring your enthusiasm into your Facebook and Twitter statuses – women are excellent promoters of products without consciously realising it.

This is something to wake up and take note of.

I have dug myself a grave here, opening myself up to future criticism – I am going to have to practice what I preach now and ensure anything I write does not become repetitive.

Despite my criticism, I did actually enjoy the books and they pleasantly surprised me – as I envisaged with all the hysteria that it wouldn’t be all it was cracked up to be (as I am finding with the Twilight Saga although I am hoping I will be proved wrong when I eventually get into Book Three).

There is a love story in there that is carried along by a mystery that does keep you reeled in. I couldn’t put the books down so that is a good sign; grammar and dialogue can be corrected but if the story ain’t there – you are a bit screwed.

And I do think every woman (and possibly man!) should read it, to experience the Fifty Shades Revolution. (Purchase here)

Take a peek at the Author’s website here.

You can also follow her on Twitter @E_L_James

I think I am with millions of you ladies here when I say that every woman would love a bit of Christian in her life.

Love Missuswolf xxx